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June 22, 2008


The Los Angeles Times reviews Fae Myenne Ng's novel, Steer Toward Rock.

The convoluted plot speaks to the extraordinary circumstances of immigrants whose lives are at once pulled back to the traditions of their homeland and pushed ahead into a world where new customs and ways of living prevail. Ng depicts Chinatown almost without reference to the other San Francisco that exists merely blocks away, giving us a visceral sense of the community's life.

Boxing Duck is a music blog that features mp3s of live performances, demos, and rarities. The most recent post is a recording of Bruce Springsteen's recent Cardiff show.

T-shirt of the day: "Fake Steve Jobs" mock turtleneck

SF Weekly's All Shook Down blog interviews Ben Gibbard and Nick Harmer of Death Cab for Cutie.

So what are some of those inspirations?

Harmer: Let me think about that. I think by anything I was really inspired for this album by kind of older record bands like Wilco, in specific, and their last record Sky Blue Sky. The White Stripes stuff has always kind of been featured in my sound. I listen to a lot of The White Stripes, I listen to all of them because they’ve all recorded live and it really inspired me -- the sound from the band recording and laying together.

The Los Angeles Times examines the current state of Argentinian fiction.

Argentina has morphed from a military dictatorship into a functional, if flawed, democracy, and survived a disastrous 2001 peso crash that almost bankrupted the country. It also has experienced a cultural upheaval that has yielded a number of accomplished young fiction writers now in their late 30s and early 40s, complementing such older established writers as Tomás Eloy Martínez and César Aira.

The Hartford Courant and Sacramento Bee offer summer reading guides.

see also: the Largehearted Boy summer reading recommendations

The Guardian profiles sibling pairs making indie rock, including the Fiery Furnaces, Smoosh, and Tegan and Sara.

The Times Online has authors list books that have outlived their critical acclaim.

Many mentioned Robert Pirsig’s Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance and Carlos Casteneda’s interminable drug-soaked hippie ramblings, which I thought I was terribly cool to be reading as a kid. Luke Rhinehart’s The Dice Man scored heavily, too, and the names of Colin Wilson and Mervyn Peake were invoked with a sort of guttural sneer and one or two expletives on several occasions. Yet two names kept cropping up when my respondents were asked for the misbegotten stuff of serious literature, the people who still today have a reputation: John Fowles and Anthony bloody “Pole”.

SFX lists the top 100 science fiction authors of all time.

Browse through the collection of Mountain Goats show posters at

also at Largehearted Boy:

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